South Korean couple vandalise painting worth $500,000 by ‘mistake’, World News
A young couple accidentally destroyed a painting worth about $ 500,000 in a gallery in Seoul, the exhibition director said on Friday.
CCTV footage showed the couple using acrylic paint and a paintbrush part of a display near the artwork to splash a new addition to the piece, which is one of about 130 in the Street Noise exhibit at Lotte World Mall.
The gallery staff called the police after discovering the new dark green markings at 2:10 p.m. local time (0510 GMT) on Sunday afternoon, about 30 minutes after the couple left the area, the organizer said.
Police accessed the CCTV footage, secured the paint jar and brush to take fingerprints, and located the couple in the mall where the gallery is located.
“They confessed that they thought they were allowed to (as participatory art) and made a mistake,” said exhibition director Kang Wook. “We discuss with the artist what needs to be done.”
The 240 x 700 cm untitled graffiti artwork that Jon One produced as a live painting performance in front of an audience in Seoul in 2016 is worth about $ 500,000, Kang added.
The gallery has since put a black wire lock around the display and additional “do not touch” signs stating that the paint pots and brushes are part of the artwork.
Some visitors were photographed in front of the damaged artwork on Friday morning, and the exhibition organizer said the incident had generated increased interest in the show.
“After seeing the news report, I was curious and came earlier than planned. The damage to the original artwork is serious misconduct. I think it should be restored,” said visitor Lee Seon-mi at the gallery.